Salcombe RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew respond to mayday call

Lifeboats News Release

On Thursday 21 December, both RNLI Salcombe lifeboats, the all-weather (ALB) and the inshore (ILB) launched in response to a Coastguard request following a mayday call near Start Point.

RNLI/David Dancox

The Coastguard received a call to the sighting of several people in the water near Start Point and along with Salcombe RNLI had also tasked a Coastguard Rescue Team and search and rescue helicopter to the area.

On route to the scene it was established that two divers had become separated from their dive boat and with that information the inshore ILB was diverted to that vessel.

Using their local knowledge of the tides and working with the Coastguard team the crew of the ALB were able to locate and recover the divers one mile South of the dive boat.

Having established that both divers were in good health and were not in any danger of decompression injury, they were passed back to the dive boat North of Start Point. The ALB and other services were then stood down with the ALB returning to Salcombe, leaving the ILB to escort the dive boat to Dartmouth before returning to Salcombe.

A special mention must be made of the unknown cliff walker who made the emergency call yesterday – that person's actions saved two lives.

RNLI/David Dancox

Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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